Laine Hardy took the nation by storm when he won season 17 of "American Idol" in 2019. As part of On The Red Carpet's country music concert series to celebrate the CMA Awards, the 20-year-old country star performed his hit song "Other LA."
"I'm proud to be a country star because I'm a country boy at heart. I was seven years old when I figured out this is what I want to do with my life," Hardy said.
Hardy told ABC7 Entertainment Reporter George Pennacchio that "American Idol" judge Luke Bryan was the first country star to truly welcome him, a Livingston, Louisiana native, to Nashville.
Since the artist can't be on the road right now, he's been touring the country via virtual tour ("vTour"). Fans can purchase tickets to watch Hardy play a live acoustic set.
"Every time I play music I feel it. Being on 'American Idol,' we had live cameras on us with millions of people behind them, watching us, and the vTour is kind of the same [thing], but a smaller scale of people," Hardy explained.
In addition to virtual performances, Hardy has been busy writing music and hopes to release an album next year.
"I like to record songs and sing songs that hit me at my heart and show my feelings," Hardy said.
So, what's next on the horizon for the country star?
"I want to be a producer, I want to be a singer, songwriter. I want to do everything I can," Hardy said. "I love making music."
For more interviews with country artists, watch "On The Red Carpet at the CMA Awards" airing Wednesday, Nov. 11 at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT | 6:30 p.m. CT on the ABC-owned television stations or streaming at OnTheRedCarpet.com.